Sunday, September 02, 2012

lovesick God

A few weeks ago, after 25+ years of officiating at weddings, I finally had a couple that did not want 1 Corinthians 13 read.  They wanted the Song of Songs/Solomon!  It was great.  And ow today, practically the same passage they chose is part of the lectionary readings. 

There are a lot of views as to what this book of songs is about, and we Christians (as we usually do) 'interpret' the passages as speaking about Christ, and the relationship with the church.  But I think the Song of Songs, like most of scripture, is about God.  So, here are the thoughts I shared this morning.
First, this passage and this book of songs is a great reminder of how passionate our God is.  God gifts us with passions, and despite the fact that we may misuse them or confuse them, they are indeed gifts from the One who is so passionate about us.  No matter how cool we may act, no matter how many times we give God the cold shoulder, no matter how many times we pack up and move it, or take up with another 'love,' God remains passionately red-hot about us.
Second, we are reminded about the fact that God is an old-fashioned romantic.  In our culture, when folks pair up in books/movies/tv, it's almost an instantaneous move from 'hello' to physical intimacy.  But remember those romantic movies from the 40's and 50's, where romance took time, where there was a gradual unfolding of the loving relationship, there were flowers and chocolates, there were candle-lighted dinners, there were violins (literally or figuratively) playing in the background, there was conversation and communication and connection?  When we gather at the Table (as we did this morning in the place I serve), we have a visible reminder of the One who longs for solid, committed, long-lasting relationships with us. 
Finally, the Song of Songs/Solomon reminds us of how lovesick our God is.  When we are apart, God yearns for us; when we don't return God's messages, God sits there staring at the screen of the cell phone, hoping a text might appear; when the winter of discontent threatens to snow us in, God sends us the songs of the geese, and the deer which appear at the edge of the woods staring intently at us; when temptation entices us with new thrills, God knocks on our door and says, 'arise, come away with me, find true love, enduring love, hopeful love.'
Come away, indeed!